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    Top 10 Tips for Top-Notch Employee Communicators

    By Bailey Gannett, PRSA Colorado Communications Committee 

    In an industry increasingly surrounded by advancing technology and faster ways to communicate than ever before, it is vital for employee communicators to have a strategy and skillset to craft a more proactive approach to internal messaging. After chatting with some of our members on the employee communications committee, we have rounded up the top 10 tips for employee communicators.

    1. The 2 “Es”: Education and engagement are key factors in employee communications. If your employees don’t know what is going on within the organization, your other company priorities may be in jeopardy as well. Education is the first step to building awareness around your communications. Engagement is the second step - through relevant content and opportunities for employees to give feedback.
    2. Centralized Communications Channel:  Use one communication channel as the primary place employees can gather information. Whether this is a newsletter, intranet or a Slack channel, it needs to be simple and accessible for employees. Have employees develop a habit of only having access to information from one centralized location, so that they are not seeking it elsewhere.
    3. People Managers as Communication Ambassadors: The nice thing about internal communications is that you have a defined, targeted audience who need what you have to offer. By training people managers to build in a regular engagement and cadence with internal communications amongst their team members, it can help with adoption rates. If you have a consistent manager communication channel, mangers can help reinforce your messages as well.
    4. Data Driven Decisions: Whether you gather data from newsletter readership, intranet analytics, open-rates in emails, in-person focus groups, manager feedback or other methods, the numbers can provide valuable insight into what is (not) working.
    5. Balance the Fluff: Only use relevant content. Having too much “fluff” in your corporate communications will result in a lower attention rate. Communication can have an element of fun, but along with the lighthearted content should be meaty material that matters. 
    6. Recognize Generational Differences: Today, employee engagement is on average low across majority of industries and company sizes. The diversity of today’s workforce, including generational differences, is challenging companies to reach all employees. To be successful, communicators must understand and utilize a broad portfolio of innovative and ever-changing engagement strategies and tactics.
    7. Get Social: Social media is a great way to engage employees further and build an army of brand ambassadors. Consider utilizing an employee advocacy or employee social sharing platform that can engage teammates in unique ways that stretch far beyond email.
    8. Remote Communicators: The beauty of a digitized world is that we can be connected from wherever, whenever. Don’t neglect employees who work remote; find engaging ways to incorporate them actively into your internal communications program.
    9. Read it OR Watch it: Video content is king on social media, but it also a vital medium to help with engagement from employees. Many internal communicators are moving toward video and voice as catalysts for pushing out communications. From internal broadcasts or web series, to employee highlight stories, video can truly help connect people.
    10. Two-Way Symmetrical Communication: Just as external communications are in the era of symmetrical two-way communication flow, it is the same for internal efforts. Communication needs to be a consistent feedback loop between the messengers and the receivers. Practice pulse surveys and feedback at least once a quarter to gain insight into what employees are wanting to see.

    If you are interested in joining the employee communications group as a part of PRSA Colorado, you can find out more here. Be on the lookout for their next meeting coming up this month!

     

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